Lucent Homes In on Service Providers

Continuing its push to focus on the service provider instead of the enterprise networking business, Lucent sells part of its professional services unit.

Lucent Technologies Inc. is continuing its push to focus on the service provider instead of the enterprise networking business by selling part of its professional services unit.

Lucent has entered into an agreement to sell its Enhanced Services and Sales division to International Network Services Inc., a recently created subsidiary of private venture capital firm West Coast Venture Capital LLC.

Lucent, of Murray Hill, N.J., made the announcement just before the Fourth of July holiday.

The transaction, terms of which werent disclosed, is expected to be completed by the end of July.

International Network Services will retain the management of the division and form an independent professional services company focused on the design, integration and operation of enterprise networks, Lucent officials said. David Butze, the current president of Lucents Enhanced Sales and Services division, will become the president and CEO of the new company.

Lucents latest move is a flip-flop of sorts. Lucent had purchased the previous incarnation of International Network Services in 1999 when it was a separate networking service company, and now Lucent is pushing the company back outside its walls to handle enterprise networking services business.

"This announcement marks another piece of Lucents strategy to focus its products and portfolio on the worlds largest communication service providers," said Bill OShea, Lucent executive vice president for corporate strategy and marketing, in a statement.

Lucent made its biggest push to refocus on service providers in 2000 when it spun off its enterprise networking business to form a separate company, Avaya Inc., of Basking Ridge, N.J.

The new International Network Services company will be based in Santa Clara, Calif., and it will serve major markets across North America and Europe, officials said.

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